Dogs and other pets as loved family members
Shockingly, pets may be killed, 'put to sleep' or die from natural causes. It is an underestimated grieving that owners and family members may feel very very deeply. When pets are destroyed (for whatever the reasons) there can be great confusion and guilt. Sadness, depression, dismay and perhaps also relief are common reactions to the loss of a loved pet. No matter how small, for how short or long a period, whatever the circumstances, that living being is a highly regarded presence in the every day life of a person and their contacts.
It may seem impossible to speak of such a loss, fearing the ridicule or the misunderstanding that this could mean so very much. The circumstances could be sudden or expected and disturbing. If you have the need to understand your separation from the animal you loved, it may simply be that you want to have someone witness and honour your missing of that special friend. Even if there are very disturbing images or recollections of the death and passing, it can be so helpful to talk with a professional counsellor. You matter. Your beloved pet matters.
Of course, many of us, seek to find that kind and unconditional love with another pet. It may be that you are ready to do that sooner or later? Whatever is happening, you do deserve attention for your thoughts and feelings about the one you have lost.
Related articles from our experts
- Bereaved parents of adult children
Siobhan Toner MBACP12th February, 2017
- The impact of the death of a child
SUSAN STUBBINGS Counsellor & Counselling Supervisor, Adv. Dip. Reg MBACP2nd February, 2017
- Grief, guilt and forgiveness
Jennifer Jowles BSc (hons) Psych, Dip. Couns, Registered MBACP1st February, 2017
Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.